Guidance Department

Charlie Koch - Guidance Counselor

Before coming to Baxter, Charlie spent five years as a counselor with the Youth Building Alternatives program in Portland. Previous to that, he worked as a school-based counselor in Bath.

He has a BA in Sociology from Trinity College in Hartford, CT and an MS in Counseling from the University of Southern Maine.

Charlie has always enjoyed working in non-traditional educational settings, including experiential and outdoor education, as well as at an alternative high school. He believes strongly that everybody can learn but we all learn in different ways. Education should be student-centered, student-driven and supported by the school community. Teaching a student how to learn is as important as what they learn.

Fun facts about Charlie. He likes cooking, baking, woodworking, old motorcycles, and biking. He once spent a month biking around Nova Scotia.  He lives in Portland with his wife, two kids, two cats, and a dog.

Emily Kelly - Guidance Counselor

Emily Kelly comes to Baxter, most recently, from the University of New England, where she has been working as an admissions counselor. Previously, she interned as a counselor in a 7-12 public school in Massachusetts. She has created group counseling curricula about both LGBTQ college access and empathy when dealing with cyberbullying. Emily says, “I’m passionate about being student-focused and being a strong advocate for students at the same time.”

Emily holds a B.A. in Sociology with a minor in Business Administration, an M.Ed. in school counseling, and an Ed.S. degree focused in higher education. ”I believe that college is an option for everyone, and I aim to help close the achievement gap,” Emily says.

Fun facts: Emily moved over 15 times as a “military brat” and spent her childhood in Okinawa, Japan. She now lives in South Portland with her boyfriend, her cat, and a newly adopted rescue dog. She loves video games (PS4) and is currently going through an Overwatch addiction. She also enjoys cooking, hiking, playing tennis, and spending time with family.